When in Rome, do as the Romans do...and hail a taxi. Because it looks like the entire country will have to say arrivederci to Uber. According to The Guardian, the ride-hailing service is no longer allowed to operate due to unfair competition with local taxi services.
A Roman court came to the decision after taxi unions filed complaints, saying that they were at a disadvantage, since Uber promotes and advertises its services heavily throughout Italy. While Uber can file an appeal, it has 10 days to shutter all service in the country. If it continues to operate, Uber could face fines of €10,000 (about £8,600) for each day it defies the court ruling.
"We are shocked by the Italian’s court decision and will appeal," Uber said in a statement. "Thousands of professional, licensed drivers use the Uber app to make money and provide reliable transportation at the push of a button for Italians."
The Italian court's outright ban means that all of Uber's service, including UberBLACK, UberLUX, UberX, UberXL, and UberSelect, will have to cease operating immediately. Mashable adds that the new ruling also means that Uber will have to remove all advertising from Italy, so while local and visitors alike see the sights, they won't see any ads for Uber.
While Uber's country-wide Italian ban may seem severe, it isn't the first time that the service has faced opposition. In Austin, TX, local regulations enacted keep both Uber and Lyft from operating within city limits. The companies decided to leave the city in 2016 after a citizens introduced a ballot measure that would have required the companies to fingerprint drivers and have them undergo a background check. Now, two smaller companies, RideAustin and Fasten, dominate the ride-sharing business within city lines.
Vancouver, Barcelona, and Buenos Aires also ban Uber. But safety wasn't the major concern in Italy. It was unfair competition — so it looks like anyone heading to the country of Parmesan and piazzas will have to brush up on their real-life car-hailing skills.